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#2037898 - 02/23/13 10:46 AM can anyone give me an answer
adultpianist Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/01/12
Posts: 540
I was discussing music scores with my teacher and she said some scores have three voices. What did she mean? She said I am playing music currently with only two voices

I did not ask her to explain as I did not want to seem dumb

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#2037911 - 02/23/13 11:15 AM Re: can anyone give me an answer [Re: adultpianist]
dmd Offline
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Registered: 04/15/09
Posts: 1776
Loc: Pennsylvania
As far as I know, voicings refer to harmony tones. I goes back to singing in the chorus / choir. If you have 2 singers you have two voices, 3 singers ... 3w voices, etc ...

So, it may refer to the music you are playing only has 2 harmony tones at any given place in the music.

So, I guess that should mean that if you pay attention to how many notes you are playing simultaneously ... you should find a maximum of 2 at any given spot in the music.

Just an educated guess.
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My current system: Kawai ES7 + Focal CMS40 Powered Monitors, SennHeiser HD555 Phones, Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 audio interface, Mackie ProFX8 Mixer, Ravenscroft275, True Keys American Grand, Ivory II American Concert D, Steinway Basic, Galaxy Vintage D, True Pianos, Pianoteq, Alicia's Keys

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#2037916 - 02/23/13 11:24 AM Re: can anyone give me an answer [Re: adultpianist]
Allard Offline
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Registered: 03/27/12
Posts: 326
Loc: Netherlands
Really, if your teacher says something you don't understand, ask! That's what you pay her for, right? A teacher should never mind explaining something. Not for the first time, and probably not in repeat either. Don't be shy smile

Anyway, piano music can have more than two voices. Bach's Inventions are especially well known for this, or Beethoven's famous Moonlight sonata. This may mean you play two melodies in the right hand, or with Moonlight, a heavy bass in the left hand, broken chords in the right, and melody in the right as well. It's tricky to play!
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#2037920 - 02/23/13 11:27 AM Re: can anyone give me an answer [Re: adultpianist]
krzyzowski Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/01/10
Posts: 108
Many pieces have multiple voices; particulary in the right hand parts. Chopin is an example. The melody line might contain held notes while others are played separately. Guitar players for instance often have to play 2 parts with one hand.

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#2037928 - 02/23/13 11:43 AM Re: can anyone give me an answer [Re: adultpianist]
keystring Offline
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Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 11558
Loc: Canada
There are different kinds of music. The one you are the most familiar with probably has a melody in the RH, and an accompaniment in the LH consisting of chords. The most obvious of the other kind of music is in chorales for singers. You have two male voices, bass and tenor, and two female voices, alto and soprano. Each of them sings their own melody which you could play separately. At the same time they sound good together, because they are still harmonized and you could find a chord for each beat in which you hear all four voices. In between these two extremes, there can be melodies weaving in and out of instrumental music. That is what your teacher is talking about. You should ask her to show you by example. A good pianist will be able to play the hidden melody extra loud so that you can hear it. When we are beginners, our ears are less developed and we need it to be exaggerated. Your teacher can also underline or highlight hidden melodies so that you see them on paper.

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#2037930 - 02/23/13 11:45 AM Re: can anyone give me an answer [Re: adultpianist]
malkin Offline
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Registered: 04/18/09
Posts: 2412
Loc: *sigh* Salt Lake City
There are several little examples on this site:
http://lilypond.org/doc/v2.14/Documentation/notation/multiple-voices
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#2037951 - 02/23/13 12:27 PM Re: can anyone give me an answer [Re: adultpianist]
Derulux Offline
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Registered: 06/06/05
Posts: 5281
Loc: Philadelphia
Originally Posted By: adultpianist
I was discussing music scores with my teacher and she said some scores have three voices. What did she mean? She said I am playing music currently with only two voices

I did not ask her to explain as I did not want to seem dumb

I would ask her if she took her medication. If she did, and she is still hearing the voices... time to up the dosage. wink
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#2037971 - 02/23/13 12:56 PM Re: can anyone give me an answer [Re: adultpianist]
fizikisto Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/13/12
Posts: 278
Loc: Hernando, MS


voices

Hopefully that image will show up. If not, try cutting and pasting the link. The image there shows a simple segment of a score showing multiple voices. Notice on the treble clef that the first note of each triplet has two stems, one up and one down. The first note is being held as the rest of the triplet plays. If it were a choir singing, you could think of it as two voices in the choir singing the same note with one person holding the note for the full triplet and the other person singing the next two notes. That way, two voices are sounding at the same time. Of course, you could have a situation where both voices were singing completely different notes as well. And sometimes you'll have a situation where you see (for example) something like a quarter note in the the treble clef and a quarter rest directly above it. This is another thing that can occur when you have multiple voices, where the rest is for one voice and the note is for the other. Hope that makes sense. smile



Edited by fizikisto (02/23/13 01:02 PM)
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#2037977 - 02/23/13 01:01 PM Re: can anyone give me an answer [Re: adultpianist]
fizikisto Offline
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Registered: 02/13/12
Posts: 278
Loc: Hernando, MS
P.S. I concur with the advice to ask your teacher when you have questions. I'm a physics teacher rather than a piano teacher, but i get really frustrated with students who are too timid to ask questions. When my students ask, "Can I ask you a question?" I usually respond with "I hope so, otherwise it's going to be really hard for you to learn anything." smile
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#2038020 - 02/23/13 02:37 PM Re: can anyone give me an answer [Re: adultpianist]
adultpianist Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/01/12
Posts: 540
I am far from shy or timid but I guess when it comes to music, I want to appear confident and know what is what and knowlegeable about stuff so sometimes when my teacher tells me something, I go home and look online and then go back and say yes I know what you mean. When she talks about voices in music I research online if I can and the next week we have a dicussion about it and I can respond with the knowledge I have looked up and she will be impressed that I know this stuff

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#2038034 - 02/23/13 02:58 PM Re: can anyone give me an answer [Re: adultpianist]
fizikisto Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/13/12
Posts: 278
Loc: Hernando, MS
adultpianist
No offense was intended. I understand the desire to figure things out on your own. In any case, I hope the concept of voices in music is more clear to you now. smile

Warm Regards
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#2038043 - 02/23/13 03:10 PM Re: can anyone give me an answer [Re: adultpianist]
malkin Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/18/09
Posts: 2412
Loc: *sigh* Salt Lake City
Sooooo, did the explanations here help?
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#2038047 - 02/23/13 03:25 PM Re: can anyone give me an answer [Re: malkin]
adultpianist Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/01/12
Posts: 540
Yes thanks

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#2038055 - 02/23/13 03:33 PM Re: can anyone give me an answer [Re: adultpianist]
Andy Platt Offline
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Registered: 04/28/10
Posts: 2375
Loc: Virginia, USA
There are advantages to asking and advantages to finding out yourself. I've got to the point with my teacher that, more often than not, if I ask about something we both have a great discussion and sometimes both learn a new point.

Two voices hard - three voices, very tough. There was one of the variations of the Rameau Gavotte & Variations where I had to hear the three voices. Hands separate, voices separate practice is key. Also, write on the score to show the voices if you need to.
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#2038273 - 02/24/13 03:13 AM Re: can anyone give me an answer [Re: adultpianist]
Bobpickle Offline

Gold Supporter until July 10  2014


Registered: 05/24/12
Posts: 1383
Loc: Cameron Park, California
adultpianist, as adult pianists (which I'm taking a leap and assuming you are wink ), we all struggle at first with feeling vulnerable in our student-teacher relationships - it's obviously something with which we rarely, if ever, experience in our adult lives. I can tell you from experience, though, that acting more knowledgeable and capable than we are just hurts us in the long run if nothing else, in the form of wasted time - time we could have been connecting with our teachers, both as students, and as friends.

And look at it this way, the sooner you get comfortable asking these questions, the more you and your teacher will learn from and about each other, the more you'll know and understand (this is important because it's often in respect to a relevant specific piece or topic that your teacher is talking with you about), and the sooner you'll be to reaching whatever long-term pianistic goals you may have.

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#2038287 - 02/24/13 05:06 AM Re: can anyone give me an answer [Re: adultpianist]
casinitaly Online   content


Gold Supporter until March 1 2014


Registered: 03/01/10
Posts: 4869
Loc: Italy
These explanations are great. It is much easier to recognize the voices when there are actual singers or different musical instruments than by looking at the score (at least for me!)

Adultpianist - I really agree with the others who encourage you to ask questions of your teacher - and NEVER think your question is dumb or that you look dumb. This is a new field - no one (especially your teacher!) expects you to know the answers.

Teachers LIKE to be asked. I know, I'm a teacher!!
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Everything's too hard until you make it easy. Follow your teacher's instructions and practice wisely/much, and you'll soon wonder how you ever found it hard ;)-BobPickle
Performance anxiety: make it part of your daily routine and deal with it...Cope! zrtf90

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#2038835 - 02/25/13 05:21 AM Re: can anyone give me an answer [Re: fizikisto]
Marco M Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/28/12
Posts: 451
Loc: Europe
Very nice example, the one with the quarter notes (stems down) in the treble cleff and the triplets (stems up) in the same treble cleff. Thanks for this explanation, fizikisto! And thanks for the important question, adultpianist!
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#2038867 - 02/25/13 06:42 AM Re: can anyone give me an answer [Re: fizikisto]
Derulux Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/05
Posts: 5281
Loc: Philadelphia
Originally Posted By: fizikisto
P.S. I concur with the advice to ask your teacher when you have questions. I'm a physics teacher rather than a piano teacher, but i get really frustrated with students who are too timid to ask questions. When my students ask, "Can I ask you a question?" I usually respond with "I hope so, otherwise it's going to be really hard for you to learn anything." smile

thumb

When someone asks if they "can" ask me a question, I usually say, "Probably not, but I hope you try anyway." Or some variant. smile
_________________________
Every day we are afforded a new chance. The problem with life is not that you run out of chances. In the end, what you run out of are days.

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#2048108 - 03/14/13 09:32 AM Re: can anyone give me an answer [Re: Derulux]
dmd Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/15/09
Posts: 1776
Loc: Pennsylvania
Originally Posted By: Derulux
Originally Posted By: fizikisto
P.S. I concur with the advice to ask your teacher when you have questions. I'm a physics teacher rather than a piano teacher, but i get really frustrated with students who are too timid to ask questions. When my students ask, "Can I ask you a question?" I usually respond with "I hope so, otherwise it's going to be really hard for you to learn anything." smile

thumb

When someone asks if they "can" ask me a question, I usually say, "Probably not, but I hope you try anyway." Or some variant. smile


I have found that a simple response like "Sure" works well for encouraging questions.
_________________________
Don

My current system: Kawai ES7 + Focal CMS40 Powered Monitors, SennHeiser HD555 Phones, Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 audio interface, Mackie ProFX8 Mixer, Ravenscroft275, True Keys American Grand, Ivory II American Concert D, Steinway Basic, Galaxy Vintage D, True Pianos, Pianoteq, Alicia's Keys

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#2048167 - 03/14/13 11:53 AM Re: can anyone give me an answer [Re: adultpianist]
carlos88 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/18/13
Posts: 83
Loc: Colorado
There are a good number of piano scores where the 3-4 voices are explicitly written out with multiple bass and treble clefs. This may also have been what your teacher was referring to.

Here's an example from a Debussy prelude.




Most of the score contains the 3 explicit and separate voices, usually with 1 voice in the bass, 1 in the treble, and 1 in the middle, moving between the bass and treble clefs.

This results in a score that in some places shows 2 bass clefs with 1 treble, or 1 bass clef + 2 treble.



Edited by carlos88 (03/14/13 11:57 AM)
Edit Reason: bad editing!
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#2048297 - 03/14/13 04:21 PM Re: can anyone give me an answer [Re: adultpianist]
findingnemo2010 Offline
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Registered: 12/17/09
Posts: 1491
There are scores with more than that voices. Something like an orchestra. Depends what you are writing for I suppose. Maybe she is referring to piano sheet music with the vocal melody line added above the standard bass and treble clefs?
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